When I was asked to write a review on the Epson Expression Premium XP-520 Small-in-One printer I was thrilled! My old printer is on it’s last leg, and anytime I had to print a document (not to mention any sort of image), I cringed. My old printer is slow, loud and glitchy. So when this Epson Expression XP-520 printer showed up on my doorstep, it felt like an early Christmas ! :) I’m so glad I received the Epson Expression Printer to review…it’s a dream come true!
I think that the term Small-in-One describes the Epson XP-520 printer to a tee. This printer is compact and packed with cool features including:
- Lab-qualityPhoto printing (super quick and superior quality)
- Traditional and 2-sided printing (the trees will thank you)
- Built-in Memory Card slots
- Lined, Graph and Music Paper and Calendar Templates
- Scan to Facebook with EasyScan
Set up and Installation:
Setting up the printer was easy and straightforward. Epson does a great job making sure you will understand the simple steps to get your printer up and running. Once I had the computer unpacked and the ink cartridges in place, the initial set up was done. The software installation will vary depending on whether you own a PC or Mac. During this process I made the mistake of not realizing that Epson had a tab called “Recommended for You”. From there I would have been able to download all the drivers and utilities I needed with one click. But since I didn’t see this option, I spent a long time installing each one individually. I guess should have known that when they Epson says Smart-in-One, they probably mean Smarter-than-You
With my first prints I made a few rookie mistakes like placing the glossy paper with the glossy side up and later selecting the wrong paper size. I guess I should have paid more attention when the printer asked me if I wanted to change paper size on the settings (I totally missed this the first time around!).
But once I got the hang of it, let me tell you what a joy it was to print my first real projects with this printer.
I started with the traditional 4×6 photo. I printed one with the borderless option because this is what I would normally get when I print my photos at any photo center. I also printed an 8×10 print, because I wanted to see how the quality would hold up once the image got larger. Both these images were printed on Premium Photo Glossy paper. Take a look at a photo of my photos:
So even though the Expression XP-520 has so many more features, after only trying the traditional photo print, I was hooked! The photos printed super quickly, the printer was relatively quiet, and the quality was comparable (or even better) than the prints I’ve ordered online! I was able to take the pictures out of the tray immediately and there was no drying time.
Next, I tried printing a photo of some water lilies on some Matte Premium Presentation paper. I was trying to be a bit more artistic so I selected the image so that it would be “framed” by a white border. I am not sure if it was the setting I selected, the paper or something else, but I did notice that the colors (especially the green) did not come through as I expected. However, the resulting photo looked very sophisticated, and it would actually look beautiful in a 11×14 frame, no matting needed! I decided to print the same picture on glossy paper to see the difference, and sure enough, the resulting image’s color were more vivid and the green leaves looked like the original photo. You can see here the difference between these two:
One feature that I had read about is the ability to print pictures from my phone straight to the Epson Expression Printer XP-520. In order to do this, I downloaded the Mopria app on to my phone, and then paired it with the printer. I had read some complaints about the app not pairing with the computer, but I think this is because some people haven’t connected the printer to their wireless network. For me, it worked just fine! This is a feature I know I will use frequently, because anymore I primarily only use my phone to take pictures.
The Expression Premium XP-520 also works as a traditional printer, and I tested it by printing some text documents on to regular paper. The result was a crisp, clean and professional-looking page. I was having so much fun discovering all the features that when I saw I could also print graph paper with the touch of a button, I couldn’t resist myself. I tell you, this has got to be the most beautiful graph paper I have ever seen! The graph paper I got is indistinguishable from the highest quality graph paper you can buy at an office supply store. I sure could have used this feature when my kids were in middle school and kept running out of paper at the exact time that we came home from running errands!
Even though I was given a free Expression Premium XP-520 in exchange for this review, I wholeheartedly recommend you consider buying this printer if you are in the market for a new one. In the past I wouldn’t have thought of giving a printer as a present, but this Epson changed my mind! This printer would make a great gift for teens or adults alike because it goes above and beyond printing, copying or scanning documents.
Priced at under $130 this the Expression Premium XP-52o is an affordable and reliable option that I wouldn’t hesitate to purchase and give to any one that is in need of a printer this Christmas. Not to mention, you will save money by printing all of those Holiday Cards!